Miscreation Penitentiary

30 minutes read


A dirty van drove down a dusty road in the forest. It jumped from side to side as it bounced over the mounds of dirt that used to be a smooth path for vehicles to travel down. The grimy light coverings obscured the light coming from the dying bulbs inside. From within, the jumping caused shadows to dart in view of the driver, moving like creatures darting between the trees. The moonlight above broke through the tree cover, illuminating beams of disturbed dust that settled behind the van. Slamming on their breaks, the van came to a skidding stop as the dust from the road rushed past them, obscuring the view of the high metal gates that stood before them. The driver leaned forward to get the gates in full view. Peering through the fading dust, he whistled.

“Damn, you weren’t lying when you said this place was big money.” He said, marveling at the intricate designs in the metalwork in the gate.

“Why would I lie, Ben? I mean, what would even be the point in that?” Replied his passenger moments before another voice chimed up from the back.

“You would lie to get us to come along, Sasha. You would say things. Oh, Rachel, comes along; it will be a quick drive there and back; we’ll be out before it even gets dark.”

Sasha turned around in her seat, the pull strings from her hoodie whipping around with her.

“Come on, how are we supposed to go to a deserted prison in the woods in a short period of time? You knew full well that this would take all night. Not my fault if you decided to believe an obvious lie.”

Rachel rolled her eyes as she pulled a large pair of bolt cutters from under her seat.

“I swear, we better make some good money off this video. How many subscribers are you up to?”

“Last time I checked, I just got over 100,000.” Sasha proudly stated. “Now hurry up; get that gate open so Ben can get us in.”

“Yes, ma’am.” Rachel said sarcastically as she struggled to slide the door open. Stomping down on the dead leaves beneath her boots, she climbed from the vehicle with the bolt cutters in tow. Using the lights from the van, she approached the gate and started to make work into the chains securing the gates.

“So, do you really think this is the run that will make you famous?” Ben asked as he fiddled with the headphones around his neck.

“Of course, this is THE prison for ghost hunters. Especially with all the mystery around it.”

“If this is some amazing prison for ghost hunters, then why has no one done it yet?”

“Why? Because it was only just found when those drone racers came around to test out their new drones. They stumbled upon this place, got a shot of the gates, and posted it online. Now the really cool part is no one can find any information on this place, despite the fact the name is clearly printed on the gates. Lucky for us, no other ghost hunters are around here; we get first dibs. This is a literal gold mine.”

Ben lent forward again, dust clear he could finally read the intricate lettering that crowned the top of the gate.

Miscreation Penitentiary.

“What a goddamn name. What kind of person would you have to be to get locked up here?” Ben said as he started to look around the stonework.

“You mean what kind of monster? Because miscreation is a line dropped for monsters or beasts. Not humans, though.” Sasha said with a grin.

The clanging of chains drew Ben’s and Sasha’s eyes to Rachel as she cut through the chain holding the gate closed. A rise of wind twisted under her feet, the dead leaves swirling around Rachel for a moment before falling to the ground. Rachel held her bolt cutters in one, her eyes plastered open, watching as the leaves faded to the ground.

“Okay, how about no.” Rachel said as she climbed back into the van. “How about we just leave now? I feel like we have enough to shoot from just here.”

“Are you kidding me? This might be our first strange encounter on camera; I mean, I just wish we got that. Like breaking a seal, now the magic has tagged you.” Sasha grabbed Rachel. “You have been marked; even if we leave now, the darkness will follow you until…”

“Okay, okay, you win. I will go in; just stop talking.” Rachel said as she retracted herself from Sasha’s touch.

“Well, actually, we did get that.” Ben added. Sasha cocked her head and furrowed her brow in confusion. Ben tapped a small box sitting on his dash. “This is my dash cam, not your camera quality, but still pretty good.”

“My god, I love you, Ben. Why do you even have that? You know what, I don’t care. I will get the gate, Rachel. You start up the camera.” Sasha cracked her door open, then yelled as fast as she could. “LightCameraActionGo!” She yelled as she ran to the gate. Tossing the chain to the ground, she stood facing the van as she waited for Rachel.

“Why are you acting all squeamish suddenly? Usually, Sasha is asking to leave before you.” Ben asked as he turned to watch Rachel get her camera out.

Rachel kept her head down as she worked in silence; Ben assumed she had not heard and turned back around. When she was nearly ready to get out, she started to speak while Sasha yelled for her to hurry.

“I don’t know how to explain it, but cracking that chain was just wrong. All the other places are documented, visited, and re-visited.” Rachel looked up at the gates as she fiddled with her camera a little longer, watching as Sasha danced in the headlights.

“But even before that, I wasn’t really keen. No one has been here in so long; some places are meant to be forgotten, left to rot. I mean, you saw the leaves; we are not the only things here.”

Ben chuckled, “I don’t think anyone else is here.”

Rachel took off the lens cap and put on the shotgun mic.

“Something, not someone.” She corrected as she walked to the front of the van.

Rachel pointed the camera, making final adjustments.

“Move a little to the left, more, yea, that is probably the best lighting for this shot…Action.”

“Welcome boys and ghouls. Today we are standing outside the recent internet phenomenon, the Miscreation penitentiary. We have just cracked the seal, my first-ever virgin claim, and already, the supernatural energy of this place has shown itself. A devil’s twister, or maybe another energy trying to escape the recently opened gates. I guess we will find out when we go inside.”

Sasha stared into the camera for a few seconds after finishing; noticing the red light turn off, she jumped into the air and cheered.

“Oh my god, come on, Rachel, this is going to be amazing. We are going to be internet famous; let’s go.” Sasha screamed as she ran past Rachel and climbed into the front seat.

Rachel pushed the gate open; they were rusted and squeaky but ultimately still opened as if they were brand new. The van rolled forward slowly, and Rachel climbed into the side, closing the door behind her. The van started to pick up speed, but Sasha laid his hand on Ben’s shoulder.

“No, slow down. I really want to absorb everything. Your dash cam should get most of what is in front of us, right?”

Ben nodded as he slowed down, looking around at the grounds of the prison. Rachel pulled herself between the front seats, watching as stone statues went by and the topiary lay just behind them.

“Are we just going to ignore the fact that those trees look like they were trimmed this morning?” Rachel said as she watched the detailed plants roll by.

“I guess they must be fake; no way this place has been used in years.” Ben replied.

“I don’t know; the lock on the gate was pretty new. Even the lawns here are well kept.”

“Rachel, you need to keep this conspiracy shit coming; I can address it in my videos. That cult you joined has made you really paranoid.” Sasha laughed as she made notes in her book.

“It is not a cult! It is a group of people who understand there is more to this world than we see.”

“Yea, and last time I checked, your leader is a masked man that you have never even seen. Sounds pretty culty to me.” Sasha nudged Ben and laughed. “I am not wrong; it sounds so fucking creepy.”

Rachel sat back into her seat as Ben and Sasha laughed in the front seat, exchanging jabs at Rachel’s cult. She waited patiently as they pulled around the large, decorative roundabout that sat at the entrance of the prison. The van coasted to a stop over the white stone gravel, pressing their tire grooves into the drive. The three people hopped out of the van, all three wearing the same long brown coats. Ben walked over to Sasha and attached a mic to her; he then walked to Rachel and did the same. Opening his satchel, he started to play with a sound mixer as he put on his headphones.

“Sasha, test one, one, one, two; SashaSasha’s microphone is working, hopefully, please Ben, I need to know…”

“Yea, I got you, Rachel?”

“One, two, test, one, one, two, three, four, four, three, two…”

“Sweet, I got both of you. So don’t forget I will be able to hear everything you say. You know, providing we are all within range.”

“Why do you have to say that shit? We always stay together.” Rachel said with a little irritation in her voice. She flicked her eyes around the exquisite stone structures that seemed to be detailed beyond reason. Sasha had already climbed the stairs and was standing in front of the door. Her fingertips followed a piece of carved wood on the door, keeping herself from touching it by a hair’s breadth. She spun on the spot and dramatically pointed to Rachel.

“You, Rachel. Get the camera on me.” Shifting her aim to Ben, she continued. “As for you, we need the light. Quick before I lose what I want to say.”

Ben quickly unpacked a small light in a softbox, attaching a battery to the light. He strapped it to his back and moved to a position where his light covered Sasha.

“Back it up, Ben; we are about one stopover.”

Ben stepped back, and Rachel gave him a thumbs up; he stopped, and Rachel hit record.

“Here we are, standing at the front doors of the Miscreation Penitentiary. As you can see, the entrance is just as grand as the front gates. The grounds look as if they have been kept by a team of landscapers no later than this morning. The grass is kept, and the topiary is still lively and full of shape. Not even inside, and the mystery of this place has already started to sink in. I can feel the tension in this place, the air is electric, and I only get the feeling that this is going to get worse. Who knows what we will find when we go inside?” Sasha paused, and Rachel turned the camera off.

“Oh god, was that okay? I gave enough?” Sasha added as she scratched her head. “Maybe I should re-do the part about the grounds; it feels a little off.”

Rachel and Ben looked at one another and exchanged looks. Sasha watched and was confused as Ben walked back to the van.

“What was that about?” Sasha asked.

“Oh, you are going to find out. This is the only reason that I decided to come along.”

Sasha walked down the stairs and watched as Ben and Rachel started to attach new devices to the sound and the camera equipment.

“What are you two up?” Sasha enquired as she tried to understand

Rachel raised her camera, and the red record light turned green.

“Say hi, Sasha. We are doing the first-ever ghost hunter live stream. The brown coats once again innovate the game.”

Sasha’s eyes widened as her whole body raised up.

“Oh my gosh, that is so cool. The other brown coats are going to love this.” Sasha squealed as her mind started to rush with ideas.

“You mean they are loving this? That green light means we are live. We are two mins in, and we already have three hundred people tuning in.”

Sasha spun dramatically around until she was facing the camera. Her coat flourished around her.

“Welcome, Brown Coats, to the next adventure. First visit to the most mysterious spot for ghost hunters and the first-ever live stream. No edit, no selective shots. You are going to get the raw content that you all want, and where better to start than with the peak of mystery. Let’s go inside for the first time together.”

Ben wandered into the frame next to Sasha.

“I have a tablet here; I will be getting all your comments, so I will be able to take your suggestions for directions. Further, this footage is being saved to the cloud, so keep those time stamps, and afterward, we will scour the footage for things you catch, but we miss.”

The camera shook slightly, and Rachel called out.

“Also, the quality had to be dropped so we could actually stream. When the connection is strong, you should be getting 720p, but if the connection lessens, it will drop to as low as 480p.”

“Alright, enough of this boring shit. We just need to get our lights on, then we will head in.

The camera was placed on the floor of the van so people could see the brown coats get ready. They put on their headlamps, and Ben helped Rachel attach the softbox light backpack to her. They packed extra batteries, cables, and their walkie-talkies. The camera was picked up by Rachel, and they started to walk as a group to the front door.

“Look at the carving work on this door.” Sasha said as she rushed to it. “These grooves are a couple of centimeters deep at points. This is such a thick door, and it has been crafted by someone who knew what they were doing. I still have not touched it, Rachel back up. Ben, get here, and we will open both at the same time.”

Rachel moved back as Ben stood next to Sasha. They counted down and pushed against the door. Despite its large size, the doors swung open as if they were a simple double door for a new house. Ben and Sasha exchanged looks as the interior caught all three by surprise. The main entrance was trashed, and papers and file boxes littered the floor as if the building had been ransacked. Behind the mess, the building was just as beautiful as the outside. Rachel made sure to pan the camera around so their online viewers could see everything they did. As the camera panned down, Rachel watched Sasha reading through a piece of paper she had grabbed from a file box.

“Look at this.” Sasha said as she walked over to Rachel, holding the paper in front of the camera. “This document is just a list of crimes for one individual. A whole A4 of type ten, maybe eleven. It has everything on here. Theft, grand theft auto, murder, murder is on here multiple times.”

“Sasha looks at the bottom of the page; someone says there is a page number.” Ben yelled from out of shot.

“What the fuck?” Sasha re-raised the paper to the camera, pointing to a small print of numbers. “It says page two of six. If this is the standard for this place, we are in for a wild ride.”

All three of the brown coats started lifting pages and calling out numbers.

“Twelve pages.”

“Six pages”

“Oh god, twenty-three pages. This place is clearly for the worst kind of people. How is there no information on this place anywhere.” Sasha screamed from out of view of the camera.

Rachel turned to see Ben and Sasha looking over the piece of paper. Ben looked up from it and stared directly into the camera as he took the sheet of paper from Sasha and handed her the tablet. He raised the piece of paper up so the camera could look see what they were looking at.

“This is the sheet of someone who was so disgusting that not only was his name scrubbed, and the only crime listed over and over is cannibalism with just a few scatterings of feticide. Whatever that is.”

Rachel stuck her hand into the frame to point to herself.

“I can answer that. Feticide, otherwise known as Female Feticide, is the act of forcing an abortion. It is disgusting, and I hate to think why that would be listed if the only other listings are cannibalism.”

Sasha walked over and snatched the sheet of paper from Ben; scanning it with her eyes, she pressed a finger on it before walking to a site map. To which she slammed a finger down and called out to the camera.

“Solitary confinement. This is where we will find our friends. I say that if any ghost in here is going to be enraged, it will be the baby-eating cannibal.”

“Can we not call him that?” Asked Rachel.

“He is what he was. If we sugarcoat it, we are only aiding in forgetting a past that has already been forgotten. It is our duty to bring to light that which has been forgotten in the darkness. Let’s go, brown coats; we got a psychopath to find.”

Sasha pulled out her phone and took a photo of the prison map; she then proceeded to message it to her two friends. She then uploaded it to the stream.

“I have messaged you all the layout of the prison; all you internet geeks can now go hunting.” Sasha said, looking straight into the camera.

“Yea, and if we get lost and lose our phones. Then the audience can direct us around.” Ben said with a chuckle in his throat.

Sasha hit him with the back of her hand; turning back to the camera, she hunched down and got extremely close.

“We are going to find this man’s cell. Then we are going to set up for the greatest encounter ever caught on camera.”

Sasha stared down the camera for a moment after talking before pulling up her phone and leading the group out of the main lobby.

“Come on, guys, into the belly of the beast.”

Ben looked back to Rachel and encouraged her to catch up. The camera shook as she jogged to reach the others. They wandered down a long hall in relative silence as the ornate carved wood surrounded them. At the end of the hall was a door that was slightly ajar, a cold wind blowing through flicked up the bottom of the group’s coats.

“According to the map you sent us, this is the last door of the offices. Through there is the actual prison. This is like the visitor section.” Ben said as he looked up from his phone. Sasha was brimming with excitement and bouncing on the spot.

“God, you have too much energy for this late at night.” Rachel said.

“Come on, even you must be excited about what we are going to find beyond this door.” Sasha replied.

“Okay, yea, I am pretty excited. God, I hate you so much.”

Sasha squealed and jumped with even more vigor before calming herself down. Taking in long breaths, she steadied herself in preparation for her next movement. Rachel spun on the spot and pointed the camera backward to catch some of the papers twisting into the air. The wind whispered past her ears, and she felt a chill run down her spine.

“You going to get this on camera, or are you just going to shoot the empty hall?”

“I, uh, yea.” Rachel turned back to see Sashas standing at the door with her hand on the handle.

“You okay?” Ben asked. “You look a little pale.”

“Na, I am fine, just a little cold. Should have worn a jumper under my coat like you two.”

“Ha, amateur. Well, we have no time for that; we are about to make history.” Sasha threw her voice for effect and swung the door open. Behind the door was an image that was more befitting the name of the prison. All three of them let out gasps of shock. Rachel was the first to step forward, her shoulder lamp illuminating the wet and molded walls of the actual prison. A thick smell floated into the hall and was instantly noticed by the three of them.

Sasha walked into the shot with her arm raised to her nose.

“This place smells as bad as it looks. Trust us, be thankful that this stream does not have smell O vision.”

“How is it that the rest of this place seems almost untouched. Then this place looks like any other abandoned hospital or urban building out there. I honestly wouldn’t be shocked to see graffiti in here.” Ben added as he came into a shot of the camera.

Rachel could feel the breeze from behind her rolling up her back and past her ear. Against her better judgment, she did not turn around, just to be shocked as the door behind them slammed shut. All three of the brown coats let out a shriek and turned back to the door. There was a sigh of relief heard until Rachel tried the door with no luck. Looking to the side, she noticed a key swipe.

“Guys, we are not going back this way. We need to find another way out.”

Rachel turned back to the other two. “Where is the next easiest route out?”

“Out? Why would we leave? Clearly, there is something here. We can easily get to a window, or Ben can just use his tools to break the door down.”

“Break the door down? I am not a savage. I would do a controlled burn or a small explosion on the hinges. Because I am a man of culture.”

“Whatever.” Sasha replied as she waved her arms around, dismissing the statement. “The point is, a wooden door will not stop us getting out. We can go to the solitary section, do our ritual, then we can come back and leave.”

Rachel looked back at the door and tugged at the handle a second time, her hand slowly sliding off the handle. She agreed.

“Fine, but if I die in here. I am killing you both.”

The others laughed a little as they started to walk down the hall again.

“Hey guys, I appreciate you sending photos to us, but we are running off of whatever homebrew thing Ben did up. So we really can’t see any of the photos.” Sasha said as she continued to read down the comments on the tablet.

“I take offense to the term homebrew; it is very sophisticated tech… Sort of.”

Rachel focused the camera on Sasha as she read intently on the tablet.

“What are the images they are trying to send you?” Rachel asked as she walked closer to Sasha.

“Oh, nothing, just some shitty memes.” She said as she turned the screen off and put it into her bag. “Besides, we don’t have time to be reading all the messages that are coming through. Not that we don’t love all you fine folks, but look at this place. It is huge and, urgh…” Sasha cried out as her hand touched a wall, and she peeled some mold from the wall with her fingernails.

“Shitty memes? While you were busy fungus farming, I looked up the stream on my phone, and this shit is hilarious. You are a heathen, Sasha.” Ben said with his sternest voice.

Sasha wiped her fingers off as she navigated the various chairs and tables that had been scattered around the floor. “Look, the jokey side of our fan base is yours, Ben, I get the ones that are interested in the locations, and Rachel gets the ones that are in on the spiritual side. You know, because of her cult.”

“Okay, we are settling this right now.” Rachel said as she handed the camera over to Sasha. “Come on and take the camera. The audience needs to hear this from the source.”

Sasha took the camera and fumbled with it before finally aiming back at Rachel.

“Don’t worry about the light levels changing; I put it on auto iso.” Sasha snickered.

“No touching buttons or I will get my cult after you. Okay, so brown coats around the world. We, sorry, I am not in a cult. I have joined; no, joined is the wrong word. I have attended a couple of meetings with a new group that deals with some of the more modern abnormalities. None of these old stories of ghosts, more modern theories, and what videos are legitimate and which ones are fake. We are not a cult; we just want to make sense of all the strange things that have been happening in the world.”

Ben wrapped his arm around Rachel and leaned on her heavily.

“And what she won’t tell you is that the leader is someone who has never shown his face because he always wears a mask. An old sack cloth with a weird face painted on it.” Ben added.

“Yes, the guy who organizes the group does not show his face. Because he is in a very high role in an image-based company, so he can’t have a connection to it.”

“A cult?” Sasha interrupted

“To a deep spiritual group. It is frowned upon in the business community as an activity for crazy people. Okay, my rant is over; give me my baby back.”

Sasha faked dropping the camera and smiled at Rachel as she carefully took her camera back.

“Hey, without my cult, you wouldn’t have a ritual for tonight. So maybe show some respect.”

“Your words, not mine.” Sasha replied, quickly changing the subject before Rachel could get another word in. “Does anyone else find this strange?”

Ben and Rachel looked around and erred.

“The fact there are pot plants in a prison?”

“Oh, the paintings on the wall are kind of creepy, especially for where we are located.”

“All the door handles look kind of new.”

“I mean… Yes, to all those things. But there are no bars anywhere. We usually have to deal with barrier gates, but this feels much more like a hospital, not a prison.”

Ben walked ahead of Sasha and drew the camera’s attention.

“Okay, so theory time. This is not a prison. Not technically. It is a mental asylum for the criminally insane.”

Sasha grimaced.

“Oh, come on, that is not a far-fetched theory.”

“It literally has penitentiary in the name.” Sasha rebutted.

“Easy, it was made by an overseas investor who didn’t use English as their first language, So there was some confusion.”

Rachel stopped and looked around; the other two stopped their conversation and looked at her as she walked to every door near her and tried the door handle. None of the doors opened.

“Okay, that is really weird.”

“What? That a psychiatric hospital for the criminally insane locks their doors?” Ben asked.

“No, the fact that none of these doors have locks on them. They just can’t be opened.”

Ben and Sasha took the time to look over the doors and agreed. Ben picked up a broken chair leg and brought it down onto the handle. It fell to the ground after the third strike, sticking his finger into the hole, his face scrunched up.

“There is a wall on the other side.” Ben turned to the other two with confusion carved into his face. “These are fake doors.”

Ben dropped to his knees and looked through the handle hole with his headlamp, tapping on the wood that was on the other side of the door.

“Is this a movie set?” He asked as he turned back to the camera.

“All right, now that is a good theory. But that opens even more questions and answers none. Do you think you could get behind that door?” Sasha said as she gently kicked at the door, and they watched as it bowed slightly.

Ben took off his pack and took a step back; stepping forward, he kicked the door hard. Splintering wood could be heard clattering to the floor on the other side of the door. Taking a deep breath, he kicked over and over again until the door swung open, and a thick sheet of plywood slammed into the floor on the other side.They all walked in to see an office room in the same state as the lobby. Papers were tossed everywhere and draws pulled open.

“Alright, so probably not a film set. But how do they nail up a sheet of ply from the inside of the door and get out afterward? I mean, there are no windows or any other exists. Just this closet.” Ben opened the closet and cried out.

“Oh fuck.”

Rachel and Sasha rushed over to see a skeleton curled up in the corner of the closet, clutching a broken piece of wood.

“That answers the ply-wood question. They didn’t leave; they are here.” Sasha said absently.

Ben knelt next to the skeleton and looked over it.

“I mean, I am no doctor. But this guy looks normal, like not injured or anything.”

“Urgh, shut up, Ben; you took two first aid classes. No offense, but I think your knowledge ran out when the subject stopped having flesh.” Sasha groaned out. “We won’t know anything about them, so we should move on. We are so close to the solitary room. Let us respect the dead and move on. Everyone knows this address; one of our followers will surely call the authorities.”

Rachel was the first to move out of the room, making sure to pull the camera away from the skeleton.

“I am sorry, guys; I should not have filmed that without a warning. I hope people are not shaken or triggered. Sadly, this is a reality for the hunters that are first to explore a site.”

Rachel said as she took the tablet from Sasha. Replying to comments of distress.

“Hey guys, people are telling us to go back to the van. Someone has called the cops, and they are on their way. Us being here might complicate the police search.”

Sasha stormed out of the office.

“Woah, no. We are not going back. Let me look at this tablet.” Sasha snatched the tablet and groaned. “Ignore this idiot; it is the name of one of the other hunters. They are just trying to buy themselves time and get us out. We are two, no three corners away from the solitary cell this guy was placed in.”

“I actually think I agree; maybe we head back. We have never dealt with a body before.” Ben pitched in.

“It is not a body; they have not had a body for such a long time that there isn’t even rot, just a clean skeleton. Anyway, it doesn’t even have any clothes on; this could still be a film set because who the fuck dies in a cupboard naked?”

Everyone looked at one another and sighed.

“I guess doing our thing in another room does not matter.” Rachel said.

“Yea, and I mean everything is being saved, so I guess that is all the evidence we need.” Ben summed up.

“Perfect, come on, let’s get to this room and move on.”

The group slowly walked through the halls, conversation dying before it could even start. Sasha walked at the lead, the bounce in her step gone as her once excited face had turned sour. Ben kept looking back until they went around their first corner, then he just folded his arms and hunched his body. They turned the last corner, and at the end of the new hall was a dimly lit door. Even Sasha hesitated at the daunting sight of the flickering light above the door. But nevertheless, she walked forward.

“So are we just going to ignore the fact there is a light working in this place, and it happened to be above the door we are looking for?” Rachel asked as Sasha continued to walk forward.

“I think Rachel is right; maybe we don’t….”

“Come on, guys. Yes, it is strange that there is a light, but it is not the first oddity in this place. Why would we stop here? We are so close!”

Ben looked at Rachel and tugged at his own shirt.

“Fuck it, fuck it. Alright, let’s do this quick.”

“God damn, oops. I mean, darn it. Urgh, someone will have to hold the camera while I set things up.”

Sasha stopped and held out her hand; Rachel handed over the camera and removed her backpack and put it on her front. She zipped open the bag and pulled out a thick stick of chalk. Dumping her bag on the ground, she stood in front of the door.

“From what we understand of this symbol, it helps to drag individuals from other worlds. So I will put it on the door, and his spirit will be bound to the room. That way, we can stay safe out here and have the spirit locked in there.”

“Right, that makes sense. We will do the ritual, and then we will leave. Sorry everyone, but that skeleton really does kind of make me uncomfortable.” Sasha said as she shakily aimed the camera at Rachel as she chalked a strange pattern on the door. Stepping back once she was done.

“Now what?” Ben asked.

“Now I recite a spell, and in theory, we should have a soul trapped on the other side of that metal door.” Rachel said as she pulled out a small book from her pack. Flicking through the many full pages, she eventually backtracked and found what she was looking for.

“Emoc ot siht dlrow. Ecno ereh, ereh niaga.”

The wind picked up around the brown coats, picking up dust and scraps. The wind slammed into the door before settling. From behind the door, the sounds of chains scrapping along the floor filled the silence.

“What is the exact wording on that spell?” Ben asked as his body froze with fear.

“It drags individuals from one plain to another.”

“So, to me, that sounds like stealing our cannibal from an alternate timeline and putting him into ours. Please say there is a footnote about it being his ghost.”

Rachel swallowed hard before slowly reading through the spell again.

“Nope, nothing about a soul. It could be a translation issue. Our leader does have a weird accent. He might not be a native English speaker.”

There was a sudden thump on the door, and everyone jumped from the shock.

The group watched as the food hole slowly opened. The rusted metal scraped against itself, inside too dark to be seen, but the voice from inside was as clear as the door itself.

“Feed me.”

Ben laid a hand on Rachel and looked her in the eye.

“That symbol traps them in that room, right?”